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We need a new, fanless, managed 24-port switch for our small office and I'm considering the Cisco SG200-26. The issue is that the network cabling in the office means that the switch must be wall-mounted, oriented vertically, with the side containing the ports facing to the right and the two vented sides at the top and bottom, facing the ceiling and floor, respectively.

So, my questions are:

  • is it bad for a switch to be oriented vertically with the vents at the top and bottom? Does it screw up the ventilation? (This is a fanless switch - we need a quiet office).
  • can the rack-mounts be used as wall mounts?

We have had one switch mounted in this manner, hence the cable layout, but the switch died.

The Cisco documents give no guidance, but the documentation for a similar HP switch states that when wall-mounted, the port side should point up (toward the ceiling).

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I can only say I've done the exact same thing with no ill effect after 3 years of continuous use. Just turn the rack mounts 90 degrees to mount to the wall. There may be a bit of a gap, but it shouldn't be an issue.

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You can also try a purpose-built vertical wall mount rack.

See: http://www.racksolutions.com/server-racks/wall-mount-racks/wall-racks.html

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  • Definitely the most professional way of doing it! We'll take a chance on bolting just the supplied rackmounts to the wall, but your suggestion is clearly optimal (just a bit more expensive ;)).
    – JamesCo
    Jun 17, 2011 at 9:03
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If this is a fanless switch, and it has its ventilation wholes on the side, then you definitely want those on the up and down sides, since that will aid natural convection. The HP switches have fan assisted cooling and the air flows from the back to the front, hence the recommendation to have the port side up.

Your switch should be absolutely fine the way you are describing it.

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  • That's how I saw the physics of it, but thought that the designers might have planned for a certain orientation.
    – JamesCo
    Jun 17, 2011 at 9:01

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